Monthly Archives: August 2009

MSDN Live – fall 2009

Microsoft Norway has a tradition for hosting 2 MSDN Live events every year, one in the spring timeframe and one in the fall. This year they're having it in Stavanger, Bergen, Trondheim and Oslo.

The tour is kicked off in Stavanger on the 16th of September and is then moved on to Bergen on the 22nd and then Trondheim on the 24th, then concluding in Oslo on the 29th. This time around I will be part of the tour, which I'm really looking forward to.

 

Content
Later this year Microsoft will be releasing a whole bunch of new technologies and products, and MSDN Live this time around will focus on these new technologies and how you can take advantage of them and what they will mean for you as a developer. The sessions will be on .net 4 + C#4, ASP.net 4, WPF 4 and Silverlight 3 (released earlier this year).

Speakers
Børge Hansen, also part of the last tour and did a great job then, he will not disappoint anyone this time around either. He will kick off everything with an introduction to Visual Studio 2010, .net 4 and C# 4.

Fredrik Kalseth, an ex-colleague of mine will focus on ASP.net 4. He is truely the one to show you new stuff in ASP.net 4, great developer and speaker!

Myself; I will be doing a talk about WPF 4 and Silverlight 3.

 

This tour will not have any Microsoft speakers, all independent content, custom created for the tour.

 

What are you waiting for?
There really aren't any excuses for not joining this great tour. Great content. Sign up here now. 🙂

3D Game programming book with focus on using Balder

Over the last 6-7 months we've been hard at work getting the Balder project up to speed, one of the motivational factors for working on the project has been a book project by Gastón C. Hillar. He started a journey on writing a 3D games development book for Silverlight and researched a few engines out there and landed on Balder to be the one for the book. His book is now being announced by Packt Publishing and will be coming out in both a paper version and an ebook version. We owe a lot of thanks to Gastón for trying out Balder at the different stages and coming with feedback during the development that has proven truely valuable. You can read more about the announcement here.

If you want to learn more about game development on the Silverlight platform, be sure to pick up a copy when it hits the market!

How to clean a wireless Apple keyboard

I was cleaning my MacBook Pro the other day and used a screen cleaning liquid and a cloth and figured I'd do the keyboad with the same treatment. Turned out however that I used a little bit too much fluid, some of the keys stopped working. I got somewhat sad and stressed out over it, I really love this keyboard. So I pulled out my electronics spray and figured it was a good cleaning tool for cleaning just about anything inside the keyboard, and the best part would be that it would vaporize completely. After my full treatment and having it dry for a couple of hours, the keyboard was completely dead. I was getting even more stressed. The keyboard was safely placed in a very dry room, with the hope that a couple of days would clear everything up and give me back my keyboard. No such luck.

My next plan; rip out all the keys and see if I could figure out how to totally take the keyboard apart – there simply aren't any screws on the back. After some 10-15 keys I couldn't really see a happy ending, so I decided to put them all back. 

At this point I was close to ordering a new one, and decided I had nothing to lose and put the keyboard in the dishwasher, no soap, 50 degrees centigrate. Ran for an hour and a half. Put it up for dry.

Day 1 after the dishwasher, no life.
Day 2, lights worked.
Day 3, bluetooth came alive.
Day 4, some keys started working
Day 5, fully functional keyboard (I'm typing this post on it.. ) – me, very very happy. Saved me some 600 Norwegian Kroners ($95 or so). 

For those who aren't familiar with the beauty I went through all this work for:

 

It was a crazy and interesting ride – and well worth it. 🙂

Balder in the news.. sort of..

We're starting to get a little bit of publicity with regards to the Balder project, which of course can hardly ever be a bad thing. 🙂

Gastón Hillar has just published an article on the Dr.Dobbs blog about Balder and the optimizations we've been working on the past couple of months. I think it is pretty much thanks to Gastón that Balder was revitalized earlier this year, and he has been very active with testing all the new bits we've been putting in and given us pin-pointers to were to start looking for optimizations and so on. A huge thanks to him for the article and the go-go-spirit in using Balder and giving us the kick in the behind we needed to get the engine to a more decent level.

You can find the article here.

Gastón has written a few books earlier that can be found over at Packt Publishing.

Balder 0.8.5 release out

Update 2nd of August 2009: If you downloaded the release before 10PM Central European Time (GMT+1) on the 2nd of August 2009, please download the new binaries again. Statistics code was left in the release that caused a serious drop in performance.

We've finally got an update for Balder that contains the optimizations and new features we've been working on lately. Its still withing the Alpha stage, so we're still adding some features.

You can find it here.

 

So, whats new?

  • Support for PNG and JPEG with all features supported by Silverlight 3
  • Support for Demoniak 3D XML format – 3DSMAX plugin can be found here
  • Optimizations, multithreading – read more here
  • General bugfixing and other optimizations
  • Size reduction – no need for SharpZipLib anymore (this might come back for other reasons)

 

Balder 0.8.5 release out

Update 2nd of August 2009: If you downloaded the release before 10PM Central European Time (GMT+1) on the 2nd of August 2009, please download the new binaries again. Statistics code was left in the release that caused a serious drop in performance.

We've finally got an update for Balder that contains the optimizations and new features we've been working on lately. Its still withing the Alpha stage, so we're still adding some features.

You can find it here.

 

So, whats new?

  • Support for PNG and JPEG with all features supported by Silverlight 3
  • Support for Demoniak 3D XML format – 3DSMAX plugin can be found here
  • Optimizations, multithreading – read more here
  • General bugfixing and other optimizations
  • Size reduction – no need for SharpZipLib anymore (this might come back for other reasons)